BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    



                                                                  SB 1279
                                                                  Page  1

          SENATE THIRD READING
          SB 1279 (Pavley)
          As Amended  June 21, 2010
          Majority vote 

           SENATE VOTE  :32-0  
           
           PUBLIC SAFETY       7-0                                         
           
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          |Ayes:|Ammiano, Hagman, Beall,   |     |                          |
          |     |Gilmore, Hill,            |     |                          |
          |     |Portantino, Skinner       |     |                          |
          |     |                          |     |                          |
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           SUMMARY  :  Allows the County of Los Angeles to create a pilot  
          project, contingent on local funding, for the purposes of  
          developing a comprehensive, replicative, multidisciplinary model  
          to address the needs and effective treatment of commercially  
          sexually exploited minors.    Specifically,  this bill  :  

          1)Allows the Los Angeles County District Attorney to develop in  
            collaboration with county and community-based agencies  
            protocols for identifying and assessing minors who may be  
            victims of commercial sexual exploitation, upon their arrest  
            or detention by law enforcement.  

          2)Allows the Los Angeles County District Attorney to develop a  
            diversion program reflecting the best practices to address the  
            needs and requirements of arrested or detained minors who have  
            been determined to be victims of commercial sexual  
            exploitation.  

          3)Allows the Los Angeles County District Attorney to form a  
            multidisciplinary team including, but not limited to, city  
            police departments, county sheriff's department, the public  
            defender's officer, the probation department, child protective  
            services, and community-based organizations that work with or  
            advocate for commercially sexually exploited minors.  This  
            team will:

             a)   Develop a training curriculum reflecting best practices  
               for identifying and assessing minors who may be victims of  
               commercial sexual exploitation; and,









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             b)   Offer and provide this training curriculum through  
               multidisciplinary teams to law enforcement, child  
               protective services and others who are required to respond  
               to arrested or detained minors who may be victims of  
               commercial sexual exploitation.

          4)Defines "commercially sexually exploited minor" as a person  
            under the age of 18 who has been abused, as specified, and who  
            has been detained for a violation of the law or placed in a  
            civil hold for specified offenses.  

          5)Contains a sunset date of January 1, 2014.

          6)Requires the Los Angeles County District Attorney to submit a  
            report by April 1, 2013 to the Legislature summarizing the  
            activities performed by that office pursuant to this pilot  
            project, to assist the Legislature in their determination as  
            to whether or not to extend this program into other counties.   
            The report must include, but is not limited to, the number of  
            sexually exploited minors diverted by the program and a  
            summary of the types of services and alternate treatments  
            provided to these minors.  The report is contingent on local  
            funding and is required only if the pilot project is  
            established by the County of Los Angeles and the District  
            Attorney performs any actions within that pilot project.  The  
            report shall not include any identifying information of any  
            specific sexually exploited minor.
           
          EXISTING LAW  :

          1)Allows the Alameda County District Attorney to create a pilot  
            project, contingent on local funding, for the purposes of  
            developing a comprehensive, replicative, multidisciplinary  
            model to address the needs and effective treatment of  
            commercially sexually exploited minors.  

          2)Defines "commercially sexually exploited minor" for purposes  
            of the Alameda County pilot project as a person under the age  
            of 18 who has been abused, as specified, and who has been  
            detained for a violation of the law or placed in a civil hold  
            for specified offenses.  

           FISCAL EFFECT  :  None

           COMMENTS  :  According to the author, "Under current law, when an  








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          adult has consensual sexual relations with a minor, the adult is  
          subject to criminal prosecution, and as a matter of law, the  
          minor is deemed too young to consent to such relations.  They  
          are considered a victim under the law.  This is not the case  
          when money is exchanged for sexual activity however.  In a case  
          where an adult pays a minor in exchange for sexual activities,  
          that minor is eligible for charges of prostitution under Penal  
          Code Section 647(a) or (b), Section 653.22(a), or Section  
          653.23(a).  

          "This is a grave injustice in many cases where minors are  
          forcibly coerced and manipulated, often by an adult, into  
          selling their bodies for the benefit of their pimps.  Untold  
          numbers of children fall victim to predatory adults who sexually  
          exploit them for commercial gain in this manner, and who very  
          often abuse these minors in unspeakably brutal ways.  Currently,  
          exploited minors often go through the juvenile justice system  
          with little opportunity for rehabilitation and healing that is  
          specific to their needs.

          "Following the collaborative diversion efforts which were  
          spurred in Alameda County by AB 499 (Swanson) from 2008, and are  
          currently set to be fully integrated in that county this summer,  
          this bill seeks to address the specialized needs of commercially  
          sexually exploited minors in a manner which focuses on  
          rehabilitation rather than criminalization.  This bill would  
          authorize a similar pilot project specific to the needs and  
          capacity of Los Angeles County, and contingent upon local  
          funding.

          "Additionally, in light of the fact that federal grants are made  
          available through the Department of Justice and other  
          departments to local governments and entities for the purposes  
          of combating human trafficking and the commercial sexual  
          exploitation of minors, it is the intent and hope of this  
          legislation that Los Angeles County will be competitive for any  
          such grants or other sources of funding in the future.

          "In California, it is a crime to recruit children, pimp children  
          or pander children for the purpose of prostitution per Penal  
          Code sections 266, 266(h), and 266(i).  However, with the  
          exception of the pilot program in Alameda County, California  
          does not treat children involved in these acts of prostitution  
          as victims.  It is imperative that California change that  
          approach, and using Alameda County's efforts as a very effective  








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          beginning, this bill seeks to expand and build upon that model  
          in Los Angeles County.  It is imperative that as many exploited  
          children as possible are given the chance to have a normal life  
          in California, and this bill seeks to increase those chances."

          Please see the policy committee for a full discussion of this  
          bill.
           
          Analysis Prepared by  :    Milena Nelson / PUB. S. / (916)  
          319-3744 


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